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2010/1 Module Catalogue
Module Provider: English Short Name: ELI2009
Level: HE2 Module Co-ordinator: TATE GP Dr (English)
Number of credits: 15 Number of ECTS credits: 7.5
Module Availability
Semester 1
Assessment Pattern

Unit(s) of Assessment



Weighting Towards Module Mark( %)



Essay 1500 words (drama)






Exam (poetry and prose)






Individual Presentation as part of Group Presentation






Group Work (formative)






Module Overview

This module develops the knowledge and skills introduced at level 1 and gives students a wider and deeper understanding of the traditional material of the Anglophone canon. It covers a wide chronological period: from the Early Modern period to Romanticism.





There are two other points of continuation from level 1: first a sense of historical contextualisation that focuses on key moments of change, and second, a generic pathway that covers drama, poetry and prose.





The thematic focus of the whole module is on identity and the way that the self is constructed through literary discourses, and how this representation changes over time.





Above all, the module ensures that students have a solid basis for understanding English literature from the sixteen to the early nineteenth centuries. This knowledge will be extended and deepened through the optional modules.

Module Aims

The module aims to further develop students skill and knowledge in:





  • periods of English Literature from the Early Modern to Romantic periods;


  • the ways genres developed;


  • the theoretical and critical methodologies that underpin the study of these periods;


  • skills in close reading, analysis and critical thinking;


  • skills in oral and written communication;


  • the ability to work independently and as a group in seminars;


  • skills in time management via group presentation organisation and essay submission.





The module aims to deepen and expand students’ knowledge of:





  • key writings and themes in English literature from the sixteenth to the early nineteenth centuries;


  • individual author’s writing;


  • the development of the self and individual identity.
Learning Outcomes
  • By the conclusion of the module students will have a wide knowledge of:


  • the key periods, writers and themes of English literature from Early Modern writing to Romanticism;


  • the primary theoretical and critical apparatus used to analyse these materials;


  • the way that identity develops and changes from the sixteenth to the early nineteenth centuries;


  • how to use critical material and theoretical methodologies in relation to close textual analysis and critical thinking


  • how to communicate orally in presentations and in written form via essays;


  • working both individually and as a group


  • ability to develop a timetable for group presentation activities and essay deadline submission.
Module Content

Week 1



Lecture (GT)



Introduction to the chronological range of the module and the way in which ideas about identity were established and changed through this period. This session will provide a brief introduction to:



Early Modern Drama and Poetry



Romantic Poetry and Prose



It will also develop students’ understanding of change in terms of historical contextualisation and an understanding of genre; both were the focus of level 1 modules.



A short description of the module’s assessment will be provided as well as a discussion on the use of ULearn.








Module orientation





Week 2



Lecture (MWD)



In order to understand the importance of self-fashioning, the module begins by looking at the way Shakespeare explores identity confusion – gender, class, political and familial. The set text for this week will be Shakespeare’s As You Like It (c.1599).  








The set text for this week will be Shakespeare, As You Like It (1599), which will be used in order to discuss structures of power – both political and gendered – in the Early Modern period.





Week 3



Lecture (MWD)



This lecture continues to deconstruct the certainties of identity in the Early Modern period and contrasts Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night (1601) with As You Like It, this time including the ways in which sexuality are developed and understood.








Twelfth Night will be the focus for a discussion on gender, sexuality and class.





Week 4



Lecture (MWD)



John Webster, The Duchess of Malfi (1613). This lecture turns to Jacobean tragedy and is linked to next week’s lecture on The Changeling. It takes the idea that the Duchess has no name in order to explore the way the notion of the self gained a darker edge in the tragic genre.








The Duchess of Malfi looks at gender and class identity in relation to tragedy.





Week 5



Lecture (MWD)



'The black audience/ Where howls and gnashings shall be music,' Alsemero in The Changeling by Thomas Middleton (1622)



This lecture takes the themes of the Early Modern understanding of identity and sexuality discussed in week 1 and shows how by the 1620s male and female self-fashioning had altered. The lecture looks at the changing structure of theatre, class, morality and madness. The theoretical perspective is New Historicist.








This session traces the development of individual subjectivity allowing different political and gendered readings to be undertaken.



Set text: Thomas Middleton, The Changeling.





Week 6



Lecture (MWD)



Early Modern poetry is enormously varied, from the short and formal sonnet to major epics such as Paradise Lost. In this lecture we will look at the way in which the poet constructed a self and a beloved through the love poetry of William Shakespeare, Mary Wroth and John Donne. We will explore both the sonnet and lyric forms. All poems referred to are available in the Norton Anthology and/or on LION.










This session will compare the works of two poets discussed in the lecture.



Set texts: the specific poems for the session will be chosen by the tutors and their groups.





Week 7



Lecture (MWD)



This week will turn to the way in which Early Modern authors constructed themselves in relation to spiritual love. The poets focussed on will be John Donne and George Herbert. All poems referred to are available in the Norton Anthology and/or on LION.








This session will compare the works of two poets discussed in the lecture.



Set texts: the specific poems for the session will be chosen by the tutors and their groups.





Week 8



Lecture (CM)



Daniel Defoe, Moll Flanders (1722)



This lecture will look at the construction of women's independence in terms of sex and money.  Key contexts include the role of women in 18th century British society and representations of female crime and sexuality. 








Set text: Defoe, Moll Flanders





Week 9



Lecture (GT)



Will discuss the ways that First Generation Romantic poets formed an understanding of the Romantic ‘self’; selected poems will be derived from Wordsworth and Coleridge. All poems referred to are available in the Norton Anthology and/or on LION.










This session will compare the works of two poets discussed in the lecture.



Set texts: the specific poems for the session will be chosen by the tutors and their groups.





Week 10



Lecture (CM)



Byron, Childe Harold (1812-1818)



The lecture will look at how Byron's Childe Harold turned him into a celebrity overnight and the success of Romantic anti-hero portrayed in the poem.  An analysis of Byron as, 'mad, bad and dangerous' will be read against the brooding and self-reflective persona developed in Childe Harold.








Set text: Byron, Childe Harold





Week 11



Lecture (MWD)



Jane Austen, Mansfield Park (1814)



The lecture will explore the way in which male and female identity was constructed across a series of dialectics – inner worth and external show, moral and immoral, inherited tradition and economic initiative, as well as, country and city. It will also question the concept of Austen’s novels as located within a domestic framework by interrogating the way the novel explores colonialism.








Set text: Austen, Mansfield Park





Christmas Vacation





Week 12








Week 13



Exams/ Assessment





Week 14



Exams/ Assessment





Week 15



Reading week preparing materials for semester 2 modules







Assessment deadlines





Essay: 17/11/2010





Exam: tbc





Oral presentation:  Throughout the module

Methods of Teaching/Learning

One one-hour lecture and one one-hour seminar each week. The lectures offer a wide coverage of material and it is expected that tutors will focus on selected material from the lectures in the seminar. Seminars will be both tutor- and student-led.

Selected Texts/Journals

Essential Reading






Byron, Childe Harold


William Shakespeare, As You Like It, Tweflth Night and Sonnets



Mary Wroth



John Donne



George Herbert



William Wordsworth



Samuel Taylor Coleridge



Austen, Mansfield Park





Other texts:

Daniel Defoe, Moll Flanders (Oxford: Oxford World's Classics, 2009)

Thomas Middleton, The Changeling (London: Methuen , 2006)



William Shakespeare, The Norton Shakespeare, ed. Stephen Greenblatt, (London: W.W.Norton, 1997)



John Webster, The Duchess of Malfi and Other Plays ( Oxford : Oxford World’s Classics, 2008)







Recommended Reading



Abrams, M.H., Mirror and the Lamp (Oxford: OUP, 1972)



Belsey, Catherine, The Subject of Tragedy (London: Routledge, 1991)



Butler , Marilyn, Romantics, Rebels and Reactionaries (Oxford: OUP, 1981)



Curran, Stuart (ed.), Cambridge Companion to British Romanticism (Cambridge: CUP, 1993)



De Man, Paul, Romanticism and Contemporary Criticism Johns Hopkins University Press, 1996)



Dollimore, Jonathan and Alan Sinfield (eds), Political Shakespeare (Manchester: Manchester UP, 1985)



Dollimore, Jonathan, Radical Tragedy (London: Harvester, 1985)



Dollimore, Jonathan, Sexual Dissidence (1991)



Dutton, Richard and Richard Wilson (eds), New Historicism and Renaissance Drama (London: Longman, 1992)



Foucault, Michel, Madness and Civilisation (London: Tavistock Publications, 1967)



Greenblatt, Stephen, Renaissance Self-Fashioning (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1980)



Gurr, Andrew, The Shakespearean Stage, 1574-1642 (Cambridge, CUP, 1992)



Hanley, Keith and Raman Selden (eds), Revolutions and English Romanticism (London: Palgrave, 1991)



Howard, Jean, Stage and Social Struggle in Early Modern (London: Routledge, 1994)



Jacobus, Mary, Romanticism, Writing and Sexual Difference (Oxford: Clarendon, 1994)



Kastan, David (ed.), A Companion to Shakespeare (Oxford: Blackwell, 1999)



Loomba, Ania, Gender, Race  and renaissance Drama (Manchester: MUP, 1989)



McGann, Jerome, The Romantic Ideology (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1983)



McLuskie, Kathleen, Renaissance Dramatists (London: Harvester, 1999)



Mellor, Anne (ed.), Romanticism and Feminism (Indiana University Press, 1988)



Mousley, Andy, Renaissance Drama and Contemporary Literary Theory ( London : Macmillan, 2000)



Romantic Natural History (



Said, Edward, Culture and Imperialism (1993)



Trotter, David, The English Novel in History (1993)



Williams, Raymond, Culture and Society, 1780-1950 (1958)



Wu, Duncan, Romanticism. A Critical Reader ( Oxford : Blackwells, 2005)



Wynne-Davies, Marion, Sidney to Milton, 1580-1660 ( London : Palgrave, 2003)





Please note that the library has all the Cambridge Companions as e-books.

Last Updated

10 September 2010 JG